Mr. Hirsch to Mr. Blaine.
Constantinople, June 19, 1890. (Received July 5.)
Sir: I have the honor to inclose herewith a copy of a communication (No. 62) from Consul-General Sweeney, transmitting a dispatch (No. 131) from Consul Gillman, at Jerusalem, a copy of which is herewith inclosed, from which it would appear that on May 23 a riot took place in Jaffa, during which the Christians of that place were attacked by a Moslem mob carrying banners and “mostly armed with sticks.” The papers before me, as will be seen, do not contain sufficient information to enable me to judge of the seriousness of the affair, nor do they give any information as to whether any American citizens have been molested, attacked, or injured.
I have therefore requested Consul-General Sweeney to obtain for the information of the legation as full an account as possible of the unfortunate occurrence, and especially to ascertain whether any American citizens have been in any way interfered with.
His Highness the Grand Vizier, in reply to my inquiry, assured me that the affair was a mere local brawl, and that order and tranquillity are maintained in Jaffa and throughout Palestine.
In order to further satisfy myself as to the character of the occurrence, I called upon His Excellency Baron de Calice, the Austrian ambassador, who informs me that his advices indicate that, while there may have been a design to start a serious disturbance, the outbreak was immediately put down by the authorities.
He does not regard the situation as in any way serious, but, on the contrary, satisfactory. Owing to his many years of service in this place and his opportunities for correct information, his opinion is entitled to much weight.
I have, etc.,